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J Autism Dev Disord. 2013 Nov;43(11):2617-27. doi: 10.1007/s10803-013-1813-z.

Challenging stereotypes: sexual functioning of single adults with high functioning autism spectrum disorder.

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Department of Psychology, University of New Brunswick, P.O. Box 4400, Fredericton, NB, E3B 5A3, Canada,


This study examined the sexual functioning of single adults (61 men, 68 women) with high functioning autism and Asperger syndrome living in the community with and without prior relationship experience. Participants completed an on-line questionnaire assessing autism symptoms, psychological functioning, and various aspects of sexual functioning. In general participants reported positive sexual functioning. Participants without prior relationship experience were significantly younger and more likely to be male and identify as heterosexual. They reported significantly higher sexual anxiety, lower sexual arousability, lower dyadic desire, and fewer positive sexual cognitions. The men reported better sexual function than did the women in a number of areas. These results counter negative societal perceptions about the sexuality of high functioning individuals on the autism spectrum.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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